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Reviews Categories | Towers, masts, accessories, climbing gear | DK9SQ Portable Tower Help


Reviews Summary for DK9SQ Portable Tower
DK9SQ Portable Tower Reviews: 17 Average rating: 4.4/5 MSRP: $99
Description: A 10m telescopic mast for portable/DXpedition use.
Product is in production.
More info: http://www.qsl.net/dk9sq/
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N1OLO Rating: 5/5 Jul 6, 2003 20:23 Send this review to a friend
Great Camper's Antenna Support  Time owned: more than 12 months
I purchased the DK9SQ Mast and the matching 10-40m loop at Dayton in 2001. I've used the mast and antenna together and the mast alone to support various antennas.

The loop antenna is a little tricky to get up in the air but it is a great performer.

I've used the mast to support a 40' (approx 13m)wire vertical. The wire was attached at the top section by tying a knot. I then raised the mast and loosely wound the wire around the mast. The antenna was fed about 3'(1m) from the bottom with coax. I use a counterpoise wire for a ground.

I have also used the mast to support a half size G5RV using the the 3rd section from the top to attach the center support of the antenna.


I have found that the mast can be mounted by drive a fence pole into the ground , sliding a 3' piece of 2" PVC pipe over the pole and then placing the DK9SQ mast over the pipe.

I have found the mast to be well constructed and reasonably rigid. It is well worth the few extra bucks you'll spend on it. Don't bother with the knock-off from you-know-who.
 
KA4KYI Rating: 5/5 Jul 3, 2003 18:51 Send this review to a friend
Good for ARES use  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought the DK9SQ Portable Tower with the 10-40 meter loop antenna at Dayton last year. This is kept in my ARES group emergency van. We have used it at the past 2 years field days without a problem. Had a problem once with it coming down but found that if I gave each section a good twist as it was being extended that it would stay up without a problem. This a good tool to have when you need to get an antenna up fast.
 
ON5ZO Rating: 4/5 Feb 16, 2003 07:10 Send this review to a friend
Versatile but not for heavy antennas  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought one of these just before I got licensed to get something up quickly. I assembled it and put it up straight without anything attached to it and yes, it collapsed into itself with only light swings caused by a light breeze. No real damage but I could see the marks of the crash.
To serve as permanent support, something needed to be done.
It ended up as a support for a 20m inv V antenna (2x5m) fed with a balun. I taped all section joints together with duct tape, and put the small balun on the third section counting from the top. The top sections are too small to attach something on to that pulls it sideways, except for a wire that runs down parallel to the section. I made 2 brackets and used this to attach guy wires (nylon cord) in 4 directions (90° spreading), at 4m and 8m high.
Like this, it has been in use since November 2000 and has withstand summer heath, winter cold and heavy (really heavy) winds. Without the tape and guying it up, this wouldn't have lasted this long.

I bought a second one for temporary use, for additional dipoles, verticals or loops. I always tape the joints here too, because it just won't stay up. If you know this (and now you do) and take it into account, and your goal is a versatile solution for light wire antennas, then you just can't go wrong because the quality is good.

Bottom line: if this is what you need, and if these setbacks aren't a problem, then just go for it.

- Franki ON5ZO
 
K6CT Rating: 5/5 Jan 3, 2003 12:49 Send this review to a friend
Great for dxpeditions!  Time owned: more than 12 months
First used this pole at 3A/W0YR during cq ww cw contest in 1999. We taped wire from top to bottom and ran it to elevated radials (top of hotel roof) and wow!, did it ever play on 40m/15m. I bought one and used it as the center support for a Carolina Windom as HI/K6CT during 2001 cq ww cw. This is fairly heavy antenna and I did not use the top 2 sections as I was afraid of breaking them off. Just lashed the pole to the balcony of the qth and had great success;total of 3000+ Qs over 5 days. Light, portable and easy for one man setup. Highly recommend it. My 33' Portapole is now retired!
 
G4AON Rating: 3/5 May 26, 2002 16:48 Send this review to a friend
Udated information  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Since writing the earlier comments when I only deployed the mast for short periods (typically 3 or 4 hours), I camped overnight and left the mast supporting a dipole. Much to my horror, after being blown around by a modest wind for a few hours, the mast collapsed down inside itself.

This was almost a disaster with some damage to the ends of three sections. Thankfully, with careful repair work using epoxy resin, the mast is almost as good as new.

I don't see how any "fishing pole" type of mast can avoid this shortfall as they aren't designed to stand vertical and be "wobbled" by the wind.

The slightly fiddly solution is to place a couple of turns of masking tape, or similar, around each section to prevent it sliding down into the next section.

I still love the DK9SQ mast, but often prefer a shorter and very much cheaper fishing pole from Shakespeare - their Spear-Lite Tele-Pole 1056/700 (6.7 Mtrs, 22 ft). At least if I break this one the cost of replacement is minimal.
 
G4AON Rating: 4/5 Sep 30, 2001 05:17 Send this review to a friend
Not exactly a  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Richard (G3CWI) describes the fishing pole mast very well. There is little that I can add, except to say I use one and it works as described. You can't ask for more than that.

Another configuration for the mast is as a ground plane. The length of each section suits a 20m ground plane, all you need is an aluminium plate to fit the mast section 16 foot down from the tip and you're in business. Other configurations are equally easy to assemble. There's a picture of the mast working as a 20m ground plane on my web site at: http://www.astromag.co.uk/portable/
 
G3CWI Rating: 4/5 Sep 21, 2000 16:00 Send this review to a friend
A good purchase!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
If you are out in the wilds and want to do some radio, you will want to get your aerial in the air. The easiest way is often to use a convenient tree - the problem being that in many places there simply isn't that "convenient" tree. Your other option might be a kite but it's often too windy or just not windy enough so you need a mast.
Over the years, many amateurs have looked with interest at the fibreglass "perch poles" that are available from fishing shops. They are fairly light and strong and are available in lengths of up to about 10 metres. However, the longer poles and very expensive. In my local fishing shop I bought a 6 metre pole for £15 but in another shop I saw 10 metre poles that cost upwards of £250.
DK9SQ seems to have spotted a gap in the market here and sells a 10 metre telescopic mast that is based on a fishing pole. He claims that it is stronger than a fishing pole and it is certainly more robust than my 6 metre cheapy. For your money, you get the pole and a thin cloth cover to keep it in. To use it you will need to make up your own guys. I used 100 pound breaking strain woven nylon cord. The top sections are very thin and to support a dipole for 20 metres, I used the top of the third section. This reduced the height somewhat. I found the pole easy to use and erect without any additional help. You can see it on my first outing on a 750 foot hill in Wales on a windy day. It is holding up a 20 metre dipole which is attached with a cable tie to the top.
Packed, the mast is  1.28 metres long and without the two top sections it weighs 3 pounds 4 oz (1.5Kg).
Overall I thing that it is a useful piece of gear and will enable me to operate from many locations that would otherwise have been impractical.
The mast is available in the UK from Sycom. At the time of writing it was £57.95 plus £4 carriage (UK). See more on this mast at www.qsl.net/g3cwi
 
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